Friday, June 22, 2012

Fast, furious, and crazy

Rachel Maddow: "This is a conspiracy theory that was cooked up by the guy who told people to break people's windows after health reform passed. But the right is hard-wired to believe stuff like this. ...  It can be easy to forget that, on the right, they are susceptible enough to conspiracy theories like this, in their sort of closed-loop, fact-free universe of conservative media."

And listen to those gun-nuts she interviews in the street. That's a fact-free group if there ever was one! But this is where conspiracy enthusiasts on the right gravitate. (On the left, they're more into vaccines and 9/11 fantasies.)

But as Maddow points out, "Agitated people protesting on the street who are not good at explaining their views can be forgiven for sounding nonspecific, or even a little crazy about these things. But what those folks were articulating to me,... it's not just a random street protestor view, on the right. What those people were telling me on that street corner in Anchorage is how the right talks about the Obama administration even when they're standing at podiums."

I suspect that this is the direct result of Fox 'News.' Sure, every political party has its crazies - if some more than others - but usually, those crazies are on the fringe. Indeed, that's how it used to be even in the GOP. But not today. Today, the crazies are the Republican base. Today, crazy is mainstream in the GOP.

Some of that is undoubtedly racism. After all, the Republicans' notorious "Southern strategy" filled the party with racists in its successful attempt to take the South from the Democrats. These people have become absolutely hysterical about our first black president. (And note that Eric Holder, too, is black.)

And gun-nuts - I use that term appropriately, I think - seem to be prone to hysteria anyway. (Listen to Wayne LaPierre's speech at CPAC. Do you really wonder why I have such a poor opinion of the NRA?)

Well, conspiracy thinking in general has become mainstream in the Republican Party. Republican leaders thought to use those people - and did so successfully for many years - but now the crazies have taken control.

And until sane Americans repudiate today's extremist GOP, our nation will continue to suffer. If you think the Bush administration was a complete disaster for our country, you ain't seen nothin' yet!

Note: Thanks to Jeff for the link. This is a perfect example of why I love Rachel Maddow!


Jeff said...

"And until sane Americans repudiate today's extremist GOP, our nation will continue to suffer."

I don't have much confidence this will happen. It seems every time a sane person calls BS on the Right, they just double-down on the crazy. I still have a sinking feeling this is not going to end well. This country may end up "going to the mattresses" as the mafia would say. Maybe it needs to; Clemeza said it himself in "The Godfather:" "These things gotta happen...Helps get rid of the bad blood."

As for that glass-breaking whack job who was frothing at the mouth for civil war, he should be careful what he wishes for. There's no guarantee "his side" would win.

WCG said...

In fact, Jeff, I think it's very clear that both sides would lose.

Progress is frustrating, difficult, sometimes even boring hard work. But violence would set us back generations.

Of course, some people on the right want to set us back generations. Some even pray for the end of the world. But let's hope people are saner than that. Sane people on both sides are willing to compromise.

(Admittedly, Democrats are often so willing to compromise that they won't stand for anything at all. But that's still not as bad as their opposite.)

Jeff said...

Progress is indeed frustrating, especially when one side absolutely REFUSES to cooperate.

We have to remember that we're dealing with an ideology (the "Southern Strategy" Dixiecrats) that is holding a 150-year grudge. They never got over the Civil War. The hatred is very old, very deep, and very real.

Jim Harris said...

This Rachel Maddow clip nicely explains this whole brouhaha to me. These guys are really paranoid about gun control. I'm as liberal as they come and I don't ever think about eliminating the 2nd amendment. Maybe Obama should join the NRA and promote gun ownership - would that make these people happy? It's fine by me.

WCG said...

I don't like the NRA at all, Jim, but no, that wouldn't make them happy. After all, it didn't make them happy when Obama chose the right-wing Republican plan for health care reform, did it?

Nothing will make them happy as long as a Democrat - and a black Democrat, at that - is in the White House.

As you've seen, these people tend to be conspiracy enthusiasts. The fact that Barack Obama has done nothing at all to push gun control is just evidence of his deep, dark (pun intended) plan. If he joined the NRA, that would just be more evidence of his fiendish plot.

WCG said...

Actually, you may be right, Jeff. Here's a Republican leader threatening violence over the Supreme Court's decision upholding their own health care plan!

I've come to expect that sort of thing from random crazies in the GOP base, but from the former spokesman for the Michigan Republican Party?